Big rigs gain efficiencies

Although the main business of Dartmouth, N.S.-based Seimac Ltd. is delivering customer engineered tracking, meteorological and data solutions, the company is also marketing an Internet-based transportation management application it developed for its drivers. Called FleetMessenger, the application lets drivers receive messages, store customer information and communicate in real time to head offices via a removable Palm handheld mounted on their dashboards running the software.

“Our system is really very encompassing from the point of view that the company can track and manage their assets… Also, the dispatchers can communicate in real time to their drivers, therefore the dispatcher can be more proactive with clients,” says Seimac business development manager Kelly Lunn.

Seimac hopes to replace older technology within the trucking industry, which incorporates satellite communication with rugged dumb terminals, Lunn said, adding that this previously meant drivers had to pull over and manually process information.

“[FleetMessenger] is more of a business tool, because now they can get signature capture which allows them to send real-time (messages) back to head office that they’ve delivered the load. Now the information can be put into their accounting system and bills can be shipped out immediately,” Lunn adds.

So far, Seimac has deployed 720 Palm handhelds, with plans to deploy a total of 4,500 this year, the company said.

— With file from Ryan B. Patrick